The Indian Premier League final on Sunday is an apt battle of the Best vs Best – precisely in line with IPL broadcaster Star Sports marketing pitch. The table toppers at the league stage SunRigers Hyderabad run into Chennai Super Kings for the coveted trophy and the winner’s prize purse of the richest cricket tournament.
CSK in the first qualifier had defeated the table topper SRH for a grand ticket to the grand finale. SRH has regained the momentum with a plausible win over Kolkata Knight Riders in the 2nd eliminator at the Eden Gardens yesterday (Friday). Team’s best performer with the ball Rashid Khan turned out to be the man for the moment.
The two skippers, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Kane Williamson, have led by example and their top guns have fired consistently during the phase of the league on the way to Grand finale of the most popular cricket extravaganza around the globe.
As the grand finale brings the Best vs Best to the stage tomorrow at Wankhede stadium, Insidesport brings to its readers, the individual showings of the best from two best sides.
The SRH captain Kane Williamson, who is the top scorer of the season, is also leading the IPL Moneyball Impact Point. With eight half-centuries, 59 fours and 26 sixes, the Kiwi power batsman has amassed a whopping 688 runs, leading the SRH charge to the final from the front.
The CSK best performer Veteran Ambati Rayudu stands at fourth spot in the Impact Point Rank with 586 runs. He might be a shade behind Williamson in overall performance, but his contribution to the CSK cause is no less.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni in gold has put on display his golden touch, that has ditched him for a while. The CSK skipper like Williamson is leading by example. However, Dhoni will only better his paralleled best Shikhar Dhawan of the rivacamp inin the salary for the season. On the IPL Moneyball Impact Point and Impact Points, Dhawan has an edge over Dhoni.
Among the best all-rounders from the two teams, Aussie Shane Watson put the CSK in a position of advantage in head to head comparison with the CSK all-rounder Shakin al Hasan. The Bangladesh boy, however, has fared better with the ball.
The bowling, led by 19-year-old wrist spinner Rashid Khan, puts SunRisers Hyderabad in a position of advantage. The Afghan boy, placed 32nd on the Impact Point with 296 points, has been the wrecker in chief for his side. Ravindra Jadeja, the lead performer for CSK with the old ball, has not been able to match his class and reputation.
SunRisers Hyderabad are yet again in a position of advantage with the new ball with Sidharth Kaul’s consistent performance and ability to provide breakthroughs at crucial moments. For CSK’s Shardul Thakur has performed in bits and pieces, with a glimpse of turning the tide in CSK’s favour on his day.
The tried and trusted Best give SRH a distinct advantage against the Best of the CSK. In competitive sports, performance on the day matters the most. The form and record end up being numbers for academic interest. In the Best vs Best decisive battle at Wankhede Stadium on Sunday, the best for the day will also be crowned the Best for IPL Season 2018.